Life in Motion
We are a society on the go and ever moving. Our lives are in motion and we push hard and fast to keep the pace. As a result, we eat on the go, drink on the go, and demand portability. Right or wrong, it has become the norm for the vast majority of people worldwide. We measure the success of our day by the amount we can get done in that one day, not necessarily the quality of time within the same.
What is the cost of our “on-the-go” consumer demand? Cups of coffee, wrapped sandwiches, soda cups, straws, lids, clam shell containers, chip bags, yogurt cups, and pizza boxes, which all add up to a mountain of trash each day. If we were home, we would typically be able to put much of the above into our recycling bin, depending on our neighborhood recycling efforts and programs. On the go eating makes it more challenging to recycle or use reusable containers, as we might in our offices.
The challenge is multi-layered with no easy answers, but many within the coffee industry are happily pushing toward answers that work for all of us. But the big question remains, how do we marry the pace of our lives with being good stewards of the earth? Is there a way to have portability with less of a cost to the planet?
In addressing this question, there are many within our trade that are working toward such goals. Starbucks has, rightfully so, taken the lead on working toward a goal of creating a comprehensive recycling program for their paper and plastic cups. It is a three-part conversation from the structure of the cup material, to how the items are collected, and finally how local municipalities are set up to process the materials. It is a goal that once reached, will no doubt benefit the whole industry.
“When many people think of Starbucks, they think of our iconic white cup. That’s a meaningful connection that we’re proud of, but at the same time we are mindful of the impact our cups have on the environment, from the way they are manufactured to their final disposal…By collaborating with key industry leaders – even competitors – we aim to reduce the global impact of food and beverage packaging.”1
Paper recyclability is an issue. It is heavily regulated by the FDA, as it should be. The FDA allows the use of pulp from reclaimed fiber if only if specific conditions are met.
“Food contact pulp, including recycled pulp, must be suitably pure for its intended use. There are currently three approaches used to establish the suitable purity of recycled pulp, namely: batch testing, surrogate testing, or no-discernible-difference testing.”2
We live and work in an industry that understands the importance of sustainability throughout the supply chain. As such, we will collaboratively continue to explore ways to evaluate our overall usage, and lobby hard for safe and cost effective recycling programs for all disposable food packaging.
The pace of our lives remain our own to examine and evaluate as we are able. As I age, I find that evaluation a very relevant and pleasing process, particularly while sipping a cup of coffee. Perhaps while the technology is working hard to catch up to our needs, we should ask ourselves what would happen if we slowed the pace…just a little.
By Kelle Vandenberg
Copper Double Wall Stainlesss Vacuum Bottle
by Vessel Drinkware
vesseldrinkware.com | (855) 833-7735
A copper vacuum insulated bottle with a threaded lid for hot and cold beverages. An additional layer of copper lining provides these items with the highest level of thermal insulation in our line.
Original Java Jackets
by Java Jacket
javajacket.com | (800) 208-4128
Our classic Java Jackets come with 1,300 Java Jackets per case. They’re made with 100% recyclable and compostable natural kraft or white paper and use water-based food safe inks and glue.
BLUESTRIPE™ by Eco-Products®
by Barista Pro Shop
BaristaProShop.com | (866) 776-5288
Made with 24% post-consumer recycled office paper. Performs just like traditional paper hot cup, while using less virgin paper. Evolution World™ branding communicates your environmental commitment.
Diner Mug – Custom Logo Coffee Mug
by Grey Fox Pottery
greyfoxpottery.com | (612) 767-7407
Reintroducing an old favorite, the diner mug, guaranteed to keep your brew piping hot even on the chilliest days. Our version of this American classic is 10 oz of rock solid handmade stoneware with your custom logo.
Dixie® PerfecTouch® Insulated Paper Cups
by Georgia-Pacific Professional
gppro.com | (866) 435-5647
Hot-drink cups, cold-drink cups, recycled cups, even cups with the no-ouch protective sleeve built right in. And don’t even get us started on lids, straws and stirrers. On second thought, do. We love this stuff, and even more, we love helping you get what you need.